Yet again, The Game Collection are doing a deal for ZombiU below the £5 price point. The saving may be only a few pounds, but let's be honest here - the fact one of the Wii U's most unique experiences is under a fiver is the important part here.
Ubisoft's survival horror title won’t be to everyone’s tastes (much like those Souls games) but those brave enough to venture into the virtual streets of London will find a game that absolutely nails the terror of surviving against the hordes of the undead. Thanks to oUkTuRkEyIII @ HUKD!
Watch Dogs became one of the most divisive games of the year, delighting some and disappointing others largely depending on how much hype you'd been exposed to. However, it's still an interesting and unique sandbox game that contains some great hacking mechanics under a bit too much bumf.
What we can agree on is that GAME's £23.99 price for their exclusive PS4 and Xbox One special edition is very competitive indeed, and cheaper than almost all normal editions of the game elsewhere. Thanks to iamthebatman01 @ HUKD!
This week, we talk about Driveclub's shambolic development period and release, we look further at the latest controversy surrounding Ubisoft and Assassin's Creed: Unity, and we discuss what makes a next-gen game.
Parental Advisory: We've tried to keep it as conversational and informal as possible, and you should be warned that there may be some instances of strong language.
Another week, another Ubisoft story that has caused uproar and division, aided once again by statements from the publisher that only make things worse. This week, Sony fans are up in arms because Assassin's Creed: Unity will be released across Xbox One and PS4 running at 900p and 30fps.
For comparison's sake, Unity's predecessor -- Black Flag -- enjoyed a fairly equal release itself, but it wasn't long before the game was patched on PS4 to take advantage of that system's potential, and upgraded to 1080p/30fps with an additional free patch, with the Xbox One version stuck at the launch 900p/30fps.
There was disparity for Watch Dogs as well, running at 900p on PlayStation 4 and 792p on Xbox One.
Here, however, Ubisoft have opted for parity, apparently in order to "avoid all the debates and stuff," senior producer Vincent Pontbriand told VideoGamer in an interview. "Technically we're CPU-bound. The GPUs are really powerful, obviously the graphics look pretty good, but it's the CPU [that] has to process the AI, the number of NPCs we have on screen, all these systems running in parallel."
Except it's done the complete opposite. A hashtag has emerged (all movements have hashtags these days) -- #PS4NoParity -- from fans accusing Ubisoft of dumbing the game down on Sony's platform to achieve console parity (Ubisoft have since refuted that notion). The ire from PS4 owners is somewhat understandable, consoles are an investment after all, and if you can only afford one, you want to try and make sure it's the best one, with the expectation that games will be optimised for the £300-400 machine you just bought. Of course, it's entirely possible that Ubisoft felt that this might be the correct move for the game -- trying to locate a graphical sweet spot that would please everybody while ensuring that all of Unity's systems could run smoothly and without compromise.
But we're not in the business of making excuses for publishing leviathans with triple-A titles coming out of their pores.Click here to check out our discussion on #PS4NoParity >>
If you're new to the Might & Magic Heroes series, sorry, but the seventh instalment isn't going to make things easy for you.
Set between Heroes VI and Heroes V (yes, they're in canonical order, just run with it), Heroes VII chronicles the epic power struggle ignited by the Falcon Empress' murder. Ivan Griffin, a noble member of the Griffin Family, steps into the vacuum and gains the support of the other races of Ashan, who advise him from behind the scenes as a Shadow Council. In order to convince the unwilling hero to step up to the plate, the council representatives tell their own stories to convince him that he's the right man for the throne.
Or, in other words, we've got another excuse to partake in some streamlined strategic turn-based battles that resemble Chess and Pokemon in equal measure, with all manner of mythological creatures at our command. Limbic Entertainment clearly don't want to deviate from the formula, but they have been busy ensuring that Heroes VII makes Ashan feel like a living, real place.Click here to read more...
The Crew is breathtakingly ambitious. As I reported in our extensive hands-on preview, it's an attempt to blend MMORPGs and racing games together into a single package, set in a 5000km² adventure playground shaped and themed like the United States, with the ability to form persistent crews and factions with other players for competitive co-op. It's a brilliant idea, and one that could absolutely smash the genre wide open if it works.
However, there's an elephant in the room. Uplay. Ubisoft's digital platform has historically proved itself unfit for task during game launches, such as we saw with Watch Dogs and Far Cry 3, whereas The Crew hinges around its multiplayer as a core part of the experience. Will it hold up?
Naturally I made sure to pose the question to creative director Julian Gerighty.Click here to read more...
Avast matey! If you haven't played Assassin's Creed IV yet, £6.66 will save you a whole chest of doubloons. Thanks to LagunaLoire @ HUKD!
The last time we left our heroes, they'd emerged from a vicious street fight and secured a new base of operations. The Division's first gameplay trailer gave us a look at how players will cooperate to take back New York from the deranged survivors of a chemical attack; using both gunplay, strategy and RPG-esque skills to outmanoeuvre and outsmart their foes.
It's all right here in this E3 video. Watch it, else nothing that follows will seem wondrous. Or make any sense.
Ubisoft brought the next chapter to Gamescom 2014, or perhaps more accurately, the prequel. After showing us the daytime section again, running on Xbox One and iPad, they whisked us off to a new section of the game set during the previous night. Manhattan feels like a totally different place after sundown, an eerie and haunting environment that feels preternaturally wrong as you carefully pick your way through the ruined streets. A once bustling city now silent and deserted, save for the packs of hard-edged operators stalking through the rubble.
However, the day/night cycle is more than just a stylistic choice. New threats come out to play once the sun sets, and you'll need to work together in order to survive until dawn.Click here to read more...
So Watch Dogs came out this year. And it's really rather good, at least, as far as I'm concerned. There's a lot of padding and fluff bulking things out, but beneath that is a holistic and satisfying hacking sandbox that sets you up for some great moments, brutal combat, stealth and superb driving escapades that remind us of the last 20 minutes of Blues Brothers. However, many gamers were disappointed with both the PC visuals and certain gameplay elements, which were arguably overblown pre-launch.
For £24.99 new (£19.99 pre-owned) on PS4 at Grainger Games, it's definitely worth a try. Thanks to Bure11 @ HUKD!
You probably already know that Far Cry 4 will throw us into a massive Himalayan sandbox full of guns, elephants and deeply flammable
people scenery. Having played the slightly buggy (but admittedly not yet optimised) latest build at Gamescom 2014, I can report that the sandbox is indeed massive, the guns fire bullets and everything really does burn rather nicely.
What you might not know, however, is that we'll also be able to cross into a bizarre spirit dimension where we'll hunt demons with a slow-motion bow and mystical pet tiger.
Let's call it 'Fluffykins.' Or 'Mister Bloodwhiskers.'
Between wrangling elephants, swooping through breathtaking ravines in wingsuits and setting things on fire, our protagonist Ajay Ghale can optionally find time to meditate, whereupon he unlocks the memories of the legendary hero Kalinag. Reliving the fables through his eyes, we'll enter the mythical land of Shangri-La to protect it from a demonic invasion, which completely switches up the pace of the game in the process.Click here to read more...
Splinter Cell Blacklist is a seriously impressive sequel hinged around player choice, and better yet, it costs a ridiculous £0.97 on Wii U at Gamestop.
It's so cheap, in fact, that it won't qualify for free delivery, instead requiring an extra £2. Which is still phenomenally inexpensive.
Rayman Legends is fantastic, and if you absolutely must own it on PS4 or Xbox One, GAME are currently the cheapest retailer around. It's important to note that we've seen it cheaper before, though -- and its PC and last-gen versions will often set you back half as much with feature-complete 60FPS gameplay.
Thanks to Bure11 @ HUKD!
Update: The listing is no longer available.
Far Cry 3: Blood Dragon is a self-contained bundle of 80s awesomeness; taking everything we loved about Far Cry 3 and making it more radical than we'd ever dreamed possible. Michael Biehn, D&D references, Long Tall Sally and epic laser dinosaurs make this an essential play for shooter fans - and an proper bargain at £2.49.
Shame about Uplay, though. Thanks to oUkTuRkEyIII @ HUKD!
Despite being a superb physical specimen myself, thanks to years of training by the biggest names in the business (Fray Bentos, Colonel Sanders, all the greats), I'm always looking for new ways to get fit. Specifically, ways that are actually fun. Shape Up seemed to be the answer when Ubisoft announced it at E3 2014: a lighthearted and very 'gamey' collection of crazy activities with RPG-style progression designed to keep you engaged while burning calories. Xbox One's Kinect sensor ought to be a perfect fit.
So when Gamescom rolled around Matt told me to get plenty of footage of myself... well, rolling around. Unfortunately, live code being a tricky beast, the software was unfortunately bricked.
Never mind, though, because I quickly grabbed Shape Up creative director Charles Huteau for an interview about the game, and what the team thinks about Microsoft's Xbox One U-turn.
Being a Templar has its perks.
Sure, the Assassins have a noble cause to fight for and a trillion useless collectibles in the vault, but a life on the run wasn't enough for Shay Patrick Cormac. Thankfully the Templars are equal opportunities employers, meaning that even former enemies get immediate access to the latest military technology (including psychotropic drugs and air rifles) subversive experimental gear and insanely generous expense accounts... on the proviso that they agree to track down and murder all their former associates.
And hang out with Haytham Kenway -- who we've already identified as the coolest character in the entire series bar none -- as a bonus. Frankly you'd be mad not to.
Assassin's Creed Unity may be jumping time periods and console generations this Christmas, but for those who haven't yet invested in a PS4, Xbox One or gaming rig, there's still some unfinished business to take care of.Click here to read more...
If you're a fan of gritty westerns and tight shooters, I recommend this surprisingly excellent download without hesitation. Call Of Juarez: Gunslinger is a rootin' tootin' good time with a strong campaign and addictive arcade mode, not to mention a bargain for three Quid. Thanks to socialjeebus @ HUKD!
After all of the furore about possibly dumbing down Splinter Cell and turning one of gaming's classic stealthy franchises into an action romp after THAT E3 showing, it turned out that Blacklist was actually a really good game with a gloriously open-ended approach to things that allowed us players to play pretty much however we wanted, whenever we wanted.
Which is nice.
Anyway, HMV have the Ultimatum Edition for under £15 (knock a further quid off with the code JULY10 - still working at the time of writing) which includes the game along with an a mini graphic novel, a watch, and a bunch of DLC maps. You can grab the X360 version for the same price here.
Cracking spot by s_hayhurst at HUKD.
How many Assassin's Creed games do we need per year? Following Assassin's Creed: Liberation HD and Assassin's Creed; Unity, Ubisoft reckons that three is the magic number.
Leaked screenshots and trailer confirm that Assassin's Creed: Rogue is headed to PS3 and Xbox 360 as a semi-sequel to Assassin's Creed IV, allowing us to play as a Templar hunting Assassins throughout the icy Antarctic wastes.Click here to read more...
Rayman and Beyond Good & Evil creator Ancel has started up his own studio, named Wild Sheep. There are thirteen staffers, and the studio already has a new game in development. We're pretty sure it'll be a whimsical delight whatever it is.
However, Ancel will still be remaining with Ubisoft to lead "select projects at Ubisoft Montpellier", including one that's apparently "very close to his and the team's heart".Click here to read more...
Destiny hasn't been the only beta to emerge this week, Ubisoft also launched their closed beta for The Crew.
I'd tell you all about it if I could, but unfortunately, The Crew's beta is riddled with bugs and crashes, and after completing the first mission or two, I was met with a black, frozen screen of death that the game now constantly loads into.
We do, however, have the opening scenes of The Crew captured for your perusal, mind, and you can laugh as I attempt to deal with the game's somewhat arcadey handling and crash into a barn.